The Albemarle County Board of Supervisors approved the North Pointe rezoning at their meeting Wednesday evening August 2, 2006. The County Office Building’s Board Room was filled beyond capacity and a second overflow room was wired for sound so the large audience in attendance could hear the Board’s discussions. The final vote was 4-2 with Sally Thomas (Samuel Miller) and Dennis Rooker (Jack Jouett) both voting against the project. Ten of the twelve public speakers were in opposition to the project, however North Pointe supporters clearly filled the room and the Board was told they had been asked by the applicant not to speak if they had spoken at the previous public hearing in May.
Daily Progress coverage is linked here .
Both Rooker and Thomas cited transportation concerns as their number one reason for voting against North Pointe. Rooker indicated the development was not in the best interest of the community at this time and that he feared, “we could end up being buried in traffic on Route 29” by the additional 30,000 vehicles a day that North Pointe is projected to bring as a regional shopping destination. In this location, Route 29 currently has 37,000 vehicle trips a day. Seventy-five percent of the additional 30,000 vehicles are expected to be generated by the non-residential parts of North Pointe.
David Slutzky (Rio), who voted in favor of the development, indicated he agreed with the applicant’s arguments that traffic would actually improve on Route 29 with the North Pointe project because of the transportation proffers for the area immediately around the property. Mr. Slutzky also addressed concerns about the amount of retail being approved in the County by saying that the resulting displacement of shopping towards North Pointe and Hollymead Town Center would create accelerated redevelopment opportunities closer to Charlottesville.
This recording below has been edited to include only the transportation portion of the staff report, the Board’s deliberations on transportation, the comments by the applicant’s attorney Valerie Long and the Board’s final deliberations and vote.
Download the podcast: Download 20060802-BOS-NorthPointe.mp3
Correction 8/8/06 : The traffic numbers 30,000 and 37,000 were transposed in the original post. That has been corrected above.